Guest Author - Letta Meinen
On September 23 it is the kickoff for the Solheim Cup at Killeen Castle in Ireland with American professional women golfers against the Europeís top players. It will begin with the usual colorful pageantry and fan fare to this unique womenís golfing event. This type of tournament is fun to watch with all players trying their best to win it for their team and their country.
Rosie Jones has been picked to Captain the American team this year and she picked Sherrie Steinhauer and Juli Inkster as assistant captains. Rosie Jones has been with the LPGA for many years and has been a great competitor with a good share of winnings and on the LPGA tour for over 20 years. She has played in six previous Solheim cup tournaments and played on the first Solheim cup in 1990.
Jones was so surprised when she received the phone call that she was picked to be Captain as she had been off the LPGA tour for four years. As she said it was such a surprise but an honor to be chosen and she remembered that it will be hard work as the Americans had only lost to the Europeans three times since the first Solheim Cup was played. Rosie is aware of how much work is involved as it will take all two years to get organized and the preparation to make this an unforgettable experience for he rself and the players picked to play this event.
The first thing Rosie did was call Beth Daniels who was the 2009 captain last time to find out if there was a Captains manual she would need to work from. Beth informed her to forget it that you are on your own. She then immediately called Nancy Lopez, Patty Sheehan, Betsy King, Pat Bradley all former captains as she wanted to learn from those who had won the Solheim cup in the past. Rosie then knew she had to get out to watch the LPGA tournament and watch the American players so see their personalities and style of play as this will be important in who she will pick to be on the team.
As soon Rosie learned that usually the teams are picked on the points system and their qualifications to make up this twelve person United States team. Ten players are picked by the points system but Rosie will have two picks that are solely the captainís pick. This points system is exciting and emotional as she became focused on the winnings in 2011 events. In May of 2011 Jones invited 16 qualifiers to a training camp at Pine Valley a private golf club in New Jersey as it gave her a chance to observe the players and watch them during their time at this camp. I wanted to see how they were paired together and how they interacted with each other as she feels this important to have a winning team.
The final team will be picked soon and I will be waiting to see if my favorite players will be picked. Along with this article in my Ladies Links Fore Golf Magazine was a picture of two of my favorites, Christina Kim and Michelle Wie as they were such a great pair to watch in the last Solheim Cup and it is what brought Michelle back to womenís golf and she found he loved the events. These two will be two great ones to watch in this years Solheim Cup event.